Thursday, June 02, 2011

Book Review: Sweet Mary

Sweet Mary
My rating: 2 of 5 stars
Sweet Mary is a well written book...for the first half of the book. The writing style is clear and enjoyable. There is urgency to the writing that allows this book to be a fast read. 

The novel is about Mary, a woman wrongfully arrested due to a mistaken identity. Because of this, her life comes tumbling down and she must find the real "Bad Mary" the feds were looking for so she can put her life back on track. Joe is her high school sweetheart and he helps her in her quest to clear her name. The books takes place in Florida. The setting narration was well set-up. Clear pictures of Florida will spring into your head directly from Balmaseda's words.

The character of Mary is well written. I could imagine her doing what she did and reacting as she did (for the first half). Balmaseda created a very interesting and engaging character. She makes us feel sympathy for her and like her even more through her actions. Her character development suffered greatly during the second part of the book as the author pretty much started with Sweet Mary and ended up with Tomb Raider. Secondary characters also suffer disjointed personality. Their actions did not seem up to par with the characters themselves.

Now for the plot. The plot had great potential. It is not very complicated although it throws a few twits here and there.  But, it was interesting and engaging. The first half of the novel was really good. It was realistic. Except for the whole mistaken identity part. I know it happens all the time but, this one was pretty bad! They did not even have the same nationality! Which may be the author's argument that to some, all Hispanics are thrown into the same pile without regard to their individual cultures.

The second part of the book just got into the ferry train and high tailed it out of realistic land. It just became way too far-fetched. I mean, it was out there and then proceeded onto the left-field. How a single mom and real estate agent was able to find a fugitive woman in record time when the feds were not able to is beyond me.

The book started out well and then it just went into the realm of even the impossible is possible. It was ok for a weekend read. It would have been better had it stayed consistent with the first part.

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